Mercury Rising 1998- John Barry's Last Bond-style Score?

SpectreOfDefeatSpectreOfDefeat Posts: 404MI6 Agent

It's generally well known that John Barry was approached by Eon Productions to score Tomorrow Never Dies in 1997. However, Barry and the producers could not come to an agreement and John Barry subsequently left the Bond series. The following year, in 1998, John Barry was hired to score the Bruce Willis thriller vehicle Mercury Rising. Some, but not all, of Barry's finished score was then dumped and replaced by last-minute replacement scoring written by Carter Burwell.

The Barry score elements that remain, however, bear unmistakeable traces of Barry's Bond scoring- particularly his work on AVTAK and TLD.

In particular, the recurring motif used to represent Simon's character is similar to Barry's romantic cues from AVTAK:

Simon's Theme - YouTube

This suspense motif is- to my mind at least- extremely similar to the Bond Underwater track from AVTAK:

Barrell Kills Parent - YouTube

A View To a Kill - Bond Underwater - YouTube

These similarities indicate to me that- if Barry had scored Tomorrow Never Dies- it would have been highly similar in style to his 80s Bond soundtracks. Does anyone else agree with this speculation? Can John Barry's work on Mercury Rising be taken as fairly representative of what Barry would have done musically, had he been able to come to terms and score TND in 1997?

"The spectre of defeat..."


  • Matt SMatt S Oh Cult Voodoo ShopPosts: 6,593MI6 Agent

    It's a great score with a lot of the Bond style. Barry's final score, Enigma, still has a lot of the 1980s Bond style going on.

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